The Queens official birthday

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  • The Welsh Guard Trooping the Colour. Image by: Dominic Lipinski- Press Association

    Handing over the Colour. Image by: Dominic Lipinski- Press Association.

    The Queen leading the Welsh Guard down the Mal. Image by: Jonathan Brady- Press Association.

    The Royal Family watching the flypast from the palace. Image by: Jonathan Brady- Press Association.

  • The Queens official birthday
    13.06.2015 14:54

    The Trooping of the Colour is a tradition that dates back to the 17th century under the reign of Charles II. Originally the regimental colours (banners) were used as a rallying point for an army at war. Each regiment has their own colours’ and these colours would be slowly paraded in front of ranked soldiers of that regiment so they could be recognised on the battle field and see that they were intact. This was done before every battle.

    The Trooping of the Colour at Horse Guards Parade allows the Household Division to pay personal tribute to the Queen, who personally takes the salute of her regiment. There are five foot regiments of the Household and this year the honour fell to the Welsh Guards to parade the Colours of the regiment in front of the Queen. The Queen was escorted from Buckingham Palace to the parade ground at Westminster by the Household Cavalry mounted regiments. Once the Queen reaches Horse Guards Parade she inspects the troops of her regiment. The Army then does some neat drill work whilst a marching band plays, showing of their unity and skill. Once the parade is finished the house hold Calvary leads the Queen back to Buckingham palace. The Queen in turn leads the foot soldiers back down the Mal bearing the Colours. Once the Queen returns home a 42 gun salute is fired at Green Park followed by a flypast by the RAF to mark her official birthday.

    Sadly today despite the rain holding off, the amount of cloud made it difficult for the red arrows to perform much more than a fly by. The weather has been a problem in the past too, and is often the main reason why the Trooping of the Colour could not happen. Edward VII who’s birthday had been in November, officially changed the date of the ceremony to June so the weather would have less of an effect, and more ceremonies could therefore go ahead. This is why the Queen has her official birthday today. 

    Although it stayed mainly dry in London, it was not the same for other parts of the country.

    An occluded front bearing rain stretched from Wales to southern parts of Yorkshire and north-east Scotland also saw the trailing edge of a front deliver rain to places. Between the fronts it was a rather cloudy day with drizzle falling from the thickest cloud. In southern England south of the occluded front it was mainly cloudy with drizzle and light rain just skirting central London at the time of the parade, but it was a different world towards the southern English coastline with sunny periods.

    By: John Griffiths